Robotics Education & Competition Foundation
Inspiring students, one robot at a time.

Digital vs. Paper Notebook


I strongly believe that a bound engineering notebook is the best practice for students (especially at the elementary level). In this year's Engineering Notebook Rubric, it appears that the 5-point bonus for a bound notebook has been eliminated and replaced with a 5-point bonus for a "time stamp that can be confirmed."

Can someone explain this? Are paper notebooks still being accepted at local/State/World events, and is there still a 5-point bonus for their paper notebook being bound?

Answered by Competition Judging Committee

In the updated Judge Guide, the wording for the 5 point bonus is as follows:

"Five (5) points if the notebook has appropriate evidence that documentation was done in sequence with the design process. Examples of this would include signed and dated entries in a bound notebook, or time stamps generated by digital collaboration platforms. "

This season, Event Partners will decide whether they are going to be asking for physical notebooks, or digitally submitted notebooks. If an Event Partner chooses to have all notebooks turned in at the event then a digital notebook would need to be printed, therefore this type of notebook is allowed but not bound. The adjustment to the rubric was to give judges the ability to award the 5 point bonus to all notebooks who meet this criteria, not just teams that have a bound notebook.